Volume 7 1941~1945

Doc No.

No. 332  NAI DFA Secretary's Files A2

Memorandum by Joseph P. Walshe

DUBLIN, 14 October 1943

The French Minister came to see me yesterday. He enquired if we had received any further news about his position in Vichy.

I told him that we had endeavoured to modify the bad impression created by the long delay in receiving his telegram warning them of his intended action, but I was not sure how far we had succeeded. However, it was a good sign that nothing had happened so far.

He was extremely anxious to get going on an agreement between ourselves and the North African Committee on phosphates. Clearly he thinks that such an agreement would give him some kind of status in Dublin.

I told him for the third time that the position with regard to phosphates would be determined entirely by the Combined Board in Washington. The North African Committee could not act independently of that Board and we felt that our present line of operating through the Board was the only safe way. It was possible that, at a later stage, if we got the consent of the Board, we could do a deal with the Committee.

The French Minister did not conceal the anxiety of the North African Committee to deal with somebody about something in order to demonstrate that they had some international authority.

He went away somewhat pacified but more or less convinced that his

Committee were not in a position at the moment to 'deliver the goods'.

[initialled] J. P. W.